Thursday, December 29, 2016


"We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction that there is a better life, a better world beyond the horizon" - Franklin D. Roosevelt

Last week I took a quick trip down to the beach. I spent my day walking barefoot on the sand, smelling the sea breeze and siting at the deck to contemplate the horizon. 
It makes wonder to the soul. I felt happier with a sense of belonging.
For someone like me who suffers from motion sickness, I have been hearing the same advice all my life "if you feel unsteady, look at the horizon". Well, It is true. When you sit in front of the ocean and you focus into the horizon, that sensation of never-ending brings an idea of freedom, simplicity, unification and steadiness. I guess Nature does that to us in general.
The beach offers us even more. Being near the ocean and to profit from its salty marine breeze relaxes us in such a way that right after I sit behind the wheel to get back to the city, I am already missing my spot on that deck. 
Unfortunately this is far from happening.

Back home I was wondering if this is the reason why I love salty marine fragrances so much. Fact is that besides the relaxing effect, they wrap us by the neck and slowly drags us to a romantic day at the beach or a joyful summer vacation memory. Who does not want to live that again right?

They are also very sexy. Most salty marine fragrances feels like touching the skin with the nose and taking a long deep inhale. Bodies embraced, a long lasting kiss...

During the years I have reviewed many marine fragrances and each of them has taken me to a different shore and a different story.

Today I am exploring a fragrance that I received sometime ago from Gabriella Chieffo and I am letting it sink into my skin to see where it takes me.


Launch: 2014
Country: Italy
Concentration: EDP
Gender: Unisex
Perfumer: Luca Maffei
Olfactive Notes: Neroli, seaweed, elemi, caraway, black pepper, nutmeg, iris, incense, myrrh, patchouli, cashmeran, amber, oakmoss, musk.


"With a dive, it leaves behind the safety of the dry land. Now it finds itself here, in salt water, a mirror of the enveloping sky. A state of rest and movement in breathing, captivated by the primordial element, Purifying, Sacred. Water and salt. Life and wisdom. The branches of its soul swell inhale knowledge. It remembers being a fish and then a reptile before becoming itself. To have known smells, tastes, lives. It knows it was vertebra below the vertebrae, rocked by its breath, calmed by its heartbeats. In the salt water, made of little tears and little seas. It perceived the same smell that is here now, the never ending smell of a breath that is the end of all smells. Spit that became flesh. Dived into dryness with a wave. Having carried out the ritual, that includes the power and magic of regeneration through generation, it swallows a syllable of breath and becomes life". (Gabriella Chieffo)


ACQUASALA EDP is different from all the other fragrances that I have reviewed because although it has a rather pronounced opening, with a less "at the beach, but gazing the beach from the library window" kind of aura, it mellows in a way most salty fragrances don't. I see myself in a fancy lodge at the beach during winter time. No bikinis, no colorful drinks and certainly no Beach Boys tunes. Just a fireplace, a cozy blanket, a sip of wine or hot cocoa and a large window to look at the waves crashing on the stones. The sea shore, a salty icy breeze...a walk hand in hand wearing a warm overcoat, gloves, rain boots and a woolen scarf. It is still relaxing and sexy, but also cozy, instead of refreshing.

I didn't embrace the brand's invitation to dive right away. According to Jean Claude Ellena a fragrance needs to tell a story, and the story ACQUASALA EDP is telling me is a bit different of the one told by Gabriella. It happens. Creative people tend to create stories of their own based on memories of their own. But during dry down, after all the saltness was washed away just as a wave washes the sand and moves back down, a sensation of being under water submerged (can I say that at all?). This is what I liked about this fragrance - its versatility. It will bring you either a summer time aura or a gray-ish icy day at the beach. It depends on the mood you are in.

If you watched the Terrence Malick experimental romantic drama To The Wonder (2012) you will never forget Ben Affleck and Olga Kurylenko love scenes. The entire movie is rhythmic and fluid, but the beach scenes are really beautiful and poetic. Bodies collide and separate, they approach and they part from one another just like sea waves on the sand. That is ACQUASALA EDP to me - Malick's Normandy love scene captured in a flacon.

To feel romantic today:

To read more about salty (beach-y) fragrances:

Fleurs de Sel EDP by Miller Harris
Acqua di Sale EDP by Profumum Roma
Sel Marine EDP  by Heeley
Sel de Vetiver EDP by The Different Company
Côte D'Amour EDP by L'Artisan Parfumeur
Mr. Hulot's Holiday EDP by CB I Hate Perfume
Eternal Return EDP by CB I Hate perfume
Bois Naufragé EDP by Parfumerie Generale
Marine Breeze Comparisons 

Also at LUCKYSCENT if you are in the USA.

Images: +Q Perfume Blog/ Gabriella Chieffo/
Sample: Given by Brand

Friday, December 23, 2016



Six years ago I wrote about what I called the Mary Poppins/Nanny Mc Fee scents (Click here to read it) meaning fragrances that bring comfort to the soul in cold, rainy, gray days or to weird phases in life when things are very uncertain.
I don't recall why I was feeling that way six years ago because I tend to have a positive selective memory (a wisdom that we acquire with age) that makes me keep only what was enjoyable and memorable in my life. The emotional trash is deleted, if not daily, at least on monthly basis. But what is amazing, if not magical, is the fact that I have been feeling exactly the same way these days and surprisingly I received from someone that I care a lot THE ULTIMATE COMFORTING FRAGRANCE! Unbelievable! I had a similar experience with Olivier Durbano last year. An olfactive synchronicity, if I can call these events this way.
Anyways, here I was in some sort of graysh-ish kind of mood when this beautiful gift arrived at my door with a luxurious refillable perfume spray of the newest launch by Puredistance, created by Jan Ewoud and Parisian perfumer Cécile Zarokian.

Photo credit: Puredistance

SHEIDUNA EXTRAIT (27%) as described by the brand is "The perfect marriage between Oriental sensuality and Paris elegance.The result is a rich and intense perfume inspired by the panoramic views and feel of golden sand dunes in the desert during sunset - soft, female curves changing from deep gold to warm, orangey red - embodying a promise of sensual comfort and silent seduction"

Photo credit: Ivan Solar

Olfactive Notes: Lemon, tangerine, blackcurrant, aldehydes, Bulgarian rose essence, geranium, clove, vetiver, patchouli, amber woody, incense, benzoin, myrrh, tonic bean, vanilla pods and musks.

SHEIDUNA Extrait to me is the perfect marriage of a warm comforting sensation and sensuality. It feels like a complete therapy! Something like "let's work on your soul and once you are back on track, let's bring out all this amazing sex appeal you have!"

If you enjoyed WHITE Extrait by the brand, you will fall in love for SHEIDUNA right away.
While WHITE combined notes of Rose de Mai, orris, bergamot, vetyver, tonka beans, sandalwood and musks, SHEIDUNA brings the same rosy-creamy treats, but adds a touch of Arabia with incense, myrrh and vanilla.

Comparing SHEIDUNA with another desert inspired fragrance - TAI'F EDP by Ormonde Jayne, they are both very luxurious, very sensual and very oriental, but Tai'f has a dusty, acid, spicy touch, while SHEIDUNA has a mellow, creamy "hug me" aura combined with a mystic deepness. Both are lovely, but SHEIDUNA really capture my heart.

SHEIDUNA EXTRAIT is by far the best launch of the brand, and this is hard to evaluate because all Puredistance perfumes are beautifully crafted. But I don't recall closing my eyes and feeling heavenly for such a long long time. SHEIDUNA has that effect on us. It makes us feel adventurous, self assured and very feminine. I can declare without any doubt that it is my choice for a fragrance to wear during the Holidays. The scent will enhance the warm, cozy and joyful of Christmas. It is also the best choice for New Year's Eve because it is unique and very chic. 

Puredistance Website - SHEIDUNA PAGE

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